NOT TO BE outdone by Holden pinching the LS3 6.2-litre V8 for its VF II Commodore SS, HSV has launched a major power offensive for its MY16 range, dubbed Gen-F2.
As reported in MOTOR's October issue, HSV is trickling the mechanical package found in its GTS flagship down the range into its Clubsport, Clubsport Tourer, Maloo and Senator models. This includes the 6.2-litre supercharged LSA V8, heavy-duty six-speed manual and automatic transmissions and 9.9-inch rear differential originally lifted from the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1.
The base Maloo and Clubsport have been discontinued, with the Maloo R8 and Clubsport R8 now the entrylevel HSV models, continuing with the 340kW/570Nm 6.2-litre naturallyaspirated LS3 engine. The Grange will also continue with the LS3.
Supercharged models receive an LSA suffix, with Clayton keen to build on the brand equity surrounding the blown 6.2 thanks to rave reviews of the GTS since its release in late 2013.
To protect the GTS's flagship status, outputs for LSA models will be limited to 400kW/671Nm, but HSV admits the differences between the two tunes is limited to air intake and ECU calibration, so we'd expect to see plenty of LSA-powered HSVs rolling into tuner workshops. Not that the standard car will be lacking grunt, HSV claiming 4.6sec for the 0-100km/h sprint for both manual and automatic Clubsport R8 LSAs.
The adoption of the new engine has had a major effect on HSV's operations. Previously, the LS3- powered cars arrived at Clayton from Holden's Adelaide factory in a more or less turn-key state, however while the LSA engines are still fitted on the line, the standalone cooling systems
for the transmission and diff are not, increasing the workload for HSV staff.
All models retain passive suspension, bar the Senator which shares its clever magnetorheoligical dampers with the GTS. Likewise, HSV's trick torque vectoring system remains exclusive to GTS.
Styling changes have been fairly minimal, but there's a new front and rear fascia, bonnet vents and the front splitter now continues unbroken around the car, however the biggest visual change has been the adoption of heavily scalloped side skirts, which make a surprisingly big difference to the look of the car in profile.
There are also new 20-inch wheel designs throughout the range and two colours – Slipstream, a deep blue, and Empire, a copper bronze only available on Grange and Senator.
The interior carries over unchanged bar the deletion of the gauges from the centre console and moving the Enhanced Driver Interface to the options list.
HSV was keeping mum on any pricing changes as we went to press, however by the time you read this the information will be available in the public domain, so check out www.motormag.com.au for all the detail information.
Sales are due to start October 26, but we'll have a full report on what HSV's new supercharged models are like from behind the wheel next issue.